From the Commanding General
08/03/2017 | By Maj. Gen. Mark T. McQueen Commanding General, 108th Training Command (IET)
From the Commanding General
My first assignment when I was commissioned 35 years ago was to the 1st Armored Division, Ansbach, Germany. During that time, our nation was in the midst of the Cold War; a very contentious time in our Nation’s history to be sure. At that time, the 1st AD was the eastern most forward deployed division in the United States Army. Its mission was to deploy to the Fulda Gap and halt the Soviet and Warsaw Pact nations advance into West Germany. Adding to the complexity, the Army was at a cross-roads in terms of readiness. In the wake of the Vietnam-era, the Army was re-focused on building a values based organization with particular emphasis on training and readiness.
We have the daunting responsibility to insure every Soldier, be it officer or enlisted, is fully trained to be the warrior and leader our Army demands and the Nation expects.
I recall a poster hanging in the Company dayroom which was an image of a cemetery. It was a remarkable photograph with hundreds of headstones in perfect dress-right-dress array. The grass was green and well manicured. The full-size trees were lush green and there was a cloudless blue sky. The cemetery scene may have been Arlington National Cemetery, although it did not specifically indicate such. However, it was the caption on the poster that has forever stuck in my memory and indeed shaped my training philosophy for my entire military career. The caption read, “Let no voice cry out, ‘had I only been trained.’”
It is these words which I believe speak to the essence and responsibility of our mission within the 108th Training Command and underscores the importance of what we do. We have the daunting responsibility to insure every Soldier, be it officer or enlisted, is fully trained to be the warrior and leader our Army demands and the Nation expects. It is to each of us to insure citizen-volunteers are trained to the Army standard in their warrior tasks and battle drills. It’s to us to insure our cadets are molded and shaped into agile and adaptive leaders able to lead America’s sons and daughters in their assigned missions. It’s to our key enablers within the 108th Training Command to do all that is necessary to produce a combat ready Command able to accomplish all of its assigned and implied tasks and missions. With all of this, it truly takes a Team of Teams to focus on that which is important to insure we never hear those somber words reflected on the poster, “Let no voice cry out, ‘had I only been trained.’”
To the Soldiers, Civilians and Families of the 95th Training Division; 98th Training Division; 104th Training Division and Headquarters, 108th Training Command; our business is serious and imperative. The Army is building itself at a monthly rate faster than has been seen since World War II. To meet the readiness challenge and to be world-class trainers, we must emulate the highest of standards in personal conduct, values, competencies and professionalism. We all are expected to be the standard bearers for what right looks like, indeed experts in our field craft. Those we have the privilege, and indeed the responsibility, to train are counting on it and need to look no further than Team 108 to personify the best of our Army. Reflect on those words, “Let no voice cry out, ‘had I only been trained.’” As you do so, I’m confident you will do all that is necessary to insure the 108th Training Command is First in Training ... Army Strong!
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